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Asian American Studies

The Asian American Studies track is part of the Department of Studies in Race, Colonialism, and Diaspora.

Asian American Studies is an interdisciplinary field dedicated to an examination of the diasporic East Asian, Southeast Asian, South Asian, and Pacific Islander populations. It applies the methods and perspectives of traditional academic disciplines, such as history, sociology, political science, education, psychology and literature, to understanding the histories, communities, and cultures of Asian Americans. The Asian American community today is a diverse one that is comprised of people of different ethnicities, religions, class backgrounds and immigration histories. Scholars of Asian American Studies seek to foster greater public awareness of this diversity and the many social, legal and political contributions Asian Americans have made in society. At the same time, Asian American Studies research challenges students to confront issues of inequality, power and exclusion. Although the original focus has been on the United States, given our increasingly global society and the growing transnational nature of Asian American communities, Asian American Studies has sought to think about the connections that can be made across Asian Diaspora around the globe.

The Asian American Studies Minor provides a track of study so that students can examine the histories and experiences of Asian Americans alongside their degree pursuits. The track offers courses that introduce students to Asian American Studies and also offers the opportunity for students to craft their own areas of expertise by taking coursework on concepts and issues that intersect with the Asian American experience such as immigration, health care, gender and educational access.

Minor Requirements

The AAST minor requires five courses and must fulfill the following requirements:

  • Requirement 1 (1 course):
    RCD 0050 Introduction to Studies in Race, Colonialism, and Diaspora
  • Requirement 2 (1 course):
    One foundation course in Asian American Studies. Please see the departmental website for an updated list of courses.
  • Requirement 3 (2 courses):
    Two courses with a full or partial focus on Asian American experiences beyond the foundation. Please see the departmental website for an updated list of courses.
  • Requirement 4 (1 course):
    Senior capstone project or option course, such as an advanced research course or independent study. Departmental approval required.

A maximum of two courses from the minor may be double counted for another major or foundation or distribution requirement.


Students interested in pursuing an Asian American Studies Minor should contact track Director or RCD Department Administrator.

Kareem Khubchandani
Director of Asian American Studies
Mellon Bridge Assistant Professor
Aidekman Arts Center, Room 03

Jessica Touayl
Staff Assistant
Fung House, 2nd Floor

Nicole Frechette
Department Administrator
Fung House, 1st Floor